Monday, November 24, 2014

Ferguson

I would normally post this on the Lively Tradition, where I've been doing most of my blogging as of late, but posts there get reviewed first by Tom Shade.  Tom was down in Missouri this week, but was headed home today.  He stopped in the middle of Illinois and turned back South again as the Grand Jury results were announced.  

I have no eloquent words to share tonight.  Just a cry of "no more."

My heart is heavy tonight as I hear the Grand Jury's decision.  It's not a surprise, any more than it was a surprise that George Zimmerman was acquitted of Trayvon Martin's death.  And it may be that this decision is what is legally right, but it means no justice for Michael Brown, just as there has been no justice for so many young black men and boys who have been killed by law enforcement, including Tamir Rice, age 12, who died yesterday in Cleveland, shot for playing with a toy gun. 

If Darren Wilson didn't break the law, what we need in this country, I'm feeling, are new laws.  We need new laws limiting the use of deadly force.  We need new laws that prescribe other methods of stopping people whenever possible.  We need police to enter a situation and not escalate it, but deescalate it. 

If it's legal to shoot an unarmed man six times, we need to change that law.  And changing that law isn't on the Grand Jury, it's on us, the American people. 

We need to have a national conversation about the use of lethal force by our police, and how this is being so commonly used against unarmed black men in this country, and how we're letting that happen.